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Proceeds of Crime Act 2002

Section 99: Postponement

167.Section 99 enables the court to postpone the confiscation proceedings on one or more occasions for up to a total of two years from the accused’s conviction, or three months from the date on which any appeal against conviction is disposed of, if the three months ends more than two years after the date of conviction. There is no limit to the period of postponement where there are exceptional circumstances or the accused has failed to comply with an order under section 102, namely he has failed to respond to the prosecutor’s statement within the time limit set down by the court. The provision extends the period of postponement permitted under the earlier confiscation legislation, which is normally only up to six months. Where the court does not postpone confiscation proceedings, it must make a confiscation order before it sentences the accused.

168.The new provision in section 99 enables proceedings to be postponed for any reason, for example, because a judge is ill. Under current legislation, a postponement can only be made so that the court can obtain further information about the accused’s benefit or the realisable property.

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